To be Peaceful is to have no expectations and want nothing from no one.
Is that realistic? Can that truly be achieved?
Peace is death. All else is struggle.
And that's as much navel-contemplation as I'm doing today.
I do think that's what true peace is about. So many people spend their lives trying to be happy or get happy and I find those that seem to spend their lives searching for happiness or peace almost never find it.
I think to be able to control your desires so that you don't desire anything can bring about true inner peace. It is a very wise man that can both truly understand this principle and try to live this way.
I do think it is attainable and is studied and taught in many cultures, but probably not so easy to seek in our culture. We seek our own happiness too much.
wanting nothing from no one and having no expectations is unrealistic. It is not attainable. having realistic expectations of life might be the key but having no expectations of anything or anyone is like a vegetable existance. It might be peaceful but I do not want this kind of existance. I will stop expecting or wanting anything when I die or, G_d forbid, enter vegetative state.
There is peace in having Unspeakable Joy. We all just need to know how to obtain that Joy - know that it exists and how to maintain it.
You know, gabrielsgarden, I'm not sure if you were just throwing a fun question out there or if you are very serious in thought about it and are really looking for answers.
You can find a lot of info on human desire and inner peace in many Eastern Philosophies if you care to study them. Personally, I am very fasinated by this subject, and although I could imagine doing away with many worldly desires and quests for love, I am not so sure that I could do away with my "desire" to find peace... and I guess holding onto that one desire would sort of defeat the whole purpose, wouldn't it?
Let me know if you come to any profound realizations.
Here is a link that might be useful: Eastern Philosophies
carla, i am troubled right now and am looking for answers. this is a serious thought. I have that quote hanging on my mirror and whenever i get disappointed with something in my life I try to remember not to have expectations or want anything from anyone, but it's impossible...or at least for me it is. I wish I could live in that higher existence but evidently I cant.
thank you for the info i'll check it out.
Sorry, but I don't follow your quote. If you strive to "have no expectations and want nothing from no one," then what is the purpose of living? You would have to drop off the face of the earth, and even then, would not achieve peace. The quote, to me, is very negative and recommend you find something more positive. Just because you are currently troubled is no reason to give up -- don't cater to it. Just hang in there and remember other times you have been troubled and survived those times. As a very good friend always told me when I was overburdened at work,"This too shall come to pass." When I am troubled, I pray.
I've only 'studied' it (if that's what you want to call it) a little bit. But, people can and do learn to control their desires. That's where the key lies.
Think about it... if it really wasn't important for you to get that new house, go to that party, have that nice vacation, get that new job, have your kid get into ivy league, be able to bake the best pie, or have that cute guy call you, etc. If none of those things were "really" important to you and you really didn't desire them or things like them, then if you didn't get them, you wouldn't be disappointed and your life would be more peaceful and more positive. It's not about negativity at all, it's very, very Christian, and it really is very positive. A lot more positive than living an Oprah type "how can I make myself happy" selfish type life.
It's obviously not easy to attain especially fully, so of course you may not try out aiming for having no desires whatsoever. You may always desire indoor plumbing! Plus, it doesn't mean you can't get a new house or new car, just that you learn to control your 'desire' and have a different perspective for these 'things'. I'm sure you know people who seem to have less desire than other people; maybe they seem less superficial and more down to earth.
I don't know what specifically has you down... but you probably are disappointed in someone or something, even maybe yourself. Try to loose those desires for whatever it was you wanted. Don't think about it, don't dwell on it, don't tell yourself the what ifs. If you can loose your desire for what could have been, you should feel a lot better.
Interesting replies, and lots to consider. Just for what it is worth, my first take on the original post here, without having read the context of the OP and how she is feeling having written it, my first reaction to it, is that it means (at least to me) that you have all you need inside of you to have peace and happiness. Not looking for something outside of yourself for your happiness and well being, not expecting that something outside of yourself will do it, but peacefully knowing that you have everything you need, inside to be happy, no matter what externals are outside of yourself. Went back and read it several more times, this is still my interpretation of it.
I haven't read any of the above posts except for the first line of the one above me who says they haven't either. So I'll complete the sentence.
To be Peaceful is... (for me)
Happy, healthy, and productive grown children;
Work I enjoy (work is a privilege, folks);
No debt (for the past ten years, and you can do it too);
A lovely garden to work in.
I've had my share of challenges in life and am glad I have. I am a spiritual person but not religious. I do believe that my personal higher power loves me with a love that cannot be altered or changed in any way and, in that respect, I am loved as much as any other person on the earth. And that's a lot.
For those of you who struggle with finances, I recommend an organization called The Circle of Simplicity. It is based on simple living and it can make a huge difference for both you and the world you live in. I don't recommend religious organizations, although I am not opposed to them per se, but I do recommend developing a deep and personal spirituality.
OK, sorry, this is long...
"cannot" live in the higher existence...
Well (I know, deep subject), yes you can. I think most people believe that the "higher existence" is synonomous with being happy, no matter what - somewhat like being perfect with no worries, etc. But actually, that's not it. It's just a matter of strengthening your coping skills. No one has a worry-free, guilt-free, happy-go-lucky world. That just doesn't exist. Just imagine that place - you wouldn't learn a darn thing, and you wouldn't have the peaks and valleys that help you know and enjoy, cherrish the good times. That being said, I go back to LEARING how to cope with your lot in life. It's a challenge in learning how to let go and accept that you don't have domain of everything. That doesn't mean that you can't, or shouldn't have care or concern about things. It's a matter of accepting things that you cannot change, and realizing that you can't change something by worrying over it. I'm not trying to be philosophical here, but if you try it a few times, you'll see that you're not worrying didn't have any affect, other than it provided you freedom to have a happy thought instead of the negaive thought.
Not sure of your situation but realize that for everthing you are going through, someone else is, as well - often something similar. So, you are not alone. The key, realizing that this is something that you have to go through, and that no one else can learn the lesson meant for you on this situation. So, once you realize the lesson, move on.
I suspect that a portion of your post is that you have been disappointed - AGAIN, and maybe my the same thing, person, event as has happened in the past. OK, so there may be hurt feelings, disappointment, anger, etc. These are NORMAL reactions, to signal to you that this was not a good experience, and you should be cautious when you recognize the same signs. Not to say you shouldn't go down that same path again, but if you do, be prepared - go into it with eyse wide open, and without any expectations. Realize that you are the one that must handle any consequences. If it turns out to be a bad thing, just give yourself a hug and go to the next thing.
I know some people that get so wrapped up into situations, people, events, that they can't ever seem to get past some very trivial matters. They go on, and on, and on about a subject - often not even anything of any value other than they have to be on a soapbox about it. And, they even get upset. If you have a challenge that has your emotions raging inside, or expelling tears every five minutes, remember, your reactions are just that - your reactions. Have your pity party and then inhale some clean air and smile all the way to the next challenge. Remember, there are some good challenges!!
Now, back to finding peace in all of this. The peace comes when you have released whatever has you tied p. Peace is when you recognize the signs of a not so positive experience in the past, and you let it go to find a more positive experience. Peace is in knowing that even if you cannot "escape" a bad moment, you at least know that you can handle it because you survived it before. There is no such thing as peace from not having to deal with things that hurt, or harm, or bug, and that kind of thing. Peace is in knowing that you can, and will, and did cope with that challenge. Peace is also in knowing that you have help with all challenges - the good, and the bad.
thanks for all your words of wisdom everyone!!!!! :-)
This is a bit long, but I think it's worth reading and appropriate for this topic.
"CHANGE YOUR THINKING
Two men, both seriously ill, occupied the same hospital room. One man was allowed to sit up in his bed for an hour each afternoon to help drain the fluid from his lungs. His bed was next to the room's only window. The other man had to spend all his time flat on his back.
The men talked for hours on end. They spoke of their wives and families, their homes, their jobs, their involvement in the military service, where they had been on vacation.
Every afternoon, when the man in the bed by the window could sit up, he would pass the time by describing to his roommate all the things he could see outside the window.
The man in the other bed began to live for these one hour periods where his world would be broadened and enlivened by all the activity and color of the world outside.
The window overlooked a park with a lovely lake. Ducks and swans played on the water while children sailed their model boats. Young lovers walked arm in arm amidst flowers of every color and a fine view of the city skyline could be seen in the distance.
As the man by the window described all this in exquisite details, the man on the other side of the room would close h is eyes and imagine this picturesque scene.
One warm afternoon, the man by the window described a parade passing by. Although the other man could not hear the band - he could see it in his mind's eye as the gentleman by the window portrayed it with descriptive words.
Days, weeks and months passed.
One morning, the day nurse arrived to bring water for their baths only to find the lifeless body of the man by the window, who had died peacefully in his sleep. She was saddened and called the hospital attendants to take the body away.
As soon as it seemed appropriate, the other man asked if he could be moved next to the window. The nurse was happy to make the switch, and after making sure he was comfortable, she left him alone. Slowly, painfully, he propped himself up on one elbow to take his first look at the real world outside. He strained to slowly turn to look out the window besides the bed. It faced a blank wall.
The man asked the nurse what could have compelled his deceased roommate who had described such wonderful things outside this window.
The nurse responded that the man was blind and could not even see the wall. She said, 'Perhaps he just wanted to encourage you.'
There is tremendous happiness in making others happy, despite our own situations.
Shared grief is half the sorrow, but happiness when shared, is doubled.
If you want to feel rich, just count all the things you have that money can't buy.
'Today is a gift, that is why it is called The Present.'
Origin of this letter is unknown."